Top o’ the morning to ye
Ah to be sure ’tis a funny ould world ‘n’ tanks a million.
That’s all I’ve got. But hey, I’m in Ireland! So far it’s going great. After the atrocious amount of time spent waiting for the ferry (Tillie and I went a bit delusional I think – everything was hilarious) we finally boarded and upgraded to a cabin so that we could have a well earned sleep of a shocking 2 hours! Urgh.
We then had to disembark and begin the drive across Ireland. Which was actually very pleasant. The roads weren’t nearly as bad as I’d been led to believe and the other drivers were considerate and courteous. They have this orange line system, which I actually really like. It means that overtaking can be done in a safe and controlled manner. Which is much better and makes for a far easier drive.
So it was actually a really simple and nice drive across. I was feeling okay, despite only having had 2 hours sleep, and the navigation was easy enough as I’d checked the whole route out on Google Street View anyway. So we got to the centre in pretty good time, despite taking a minor detour halfway around the Ring of Kerry. Woops.
Everyone here is great. They’ve welcomed us into their home and their lives with open arms and big smiles. It feels to me like I’ve known them for ages, even though I’ve only been here a couple of days. Which is pretty wonderful really. There are a lot of people, which I’m not used to, but it’s nice. And everyone is great fun to be around and talk to. We’re never short of things to do, and the minute you walk in the room you get greetings and invitations to join in with whatever is going on at the time.
Things down on the stable yard are going well too. There are a lot of smaller ponies which are really super cute. We’re getting the hang of the daily routine, and we had our second day there today which was really good. We got to ride a couple of horses that are quite inexperienced in the schooling aspect. Which was…interesting.
Actually, it was a rather satisfying experience. Because at the beginning of the lesson, they were really quite hard work. And gradually they started to respond and pay attention and actually do what was asked of them. My boy, Buddy, was very responsive off the leg which I wasn’t really expecting seeing as he’s a trekker, but he didn’t understand the concept of bending through corners or circles. We got there though, and I even had him doing little bits of leg yield by the end. Of course, in Ireland riding instructors are so super chilled that they throw anything at anyone. So in our first riding lesson on two very green horses we got thrown over jumps! Fantastic. The horses worked really hard and it was definitely a challenge for us too. But it was worth it, and certainly something I hope to do more of in the coming weeks.
We’ve already been told that we can continue to work on these two horses in particular and try to bring them on a bit with their schooling work. So that’s quite exciting. A project! Other than that there’s been a lot of work with kids. Which, you may be shocked to hear, has been fine. I haven’t got frustrated or cranky or even slightly mumbly grumbly. So there! Maybe, just maybe, I’ll soften or some shit like that. Yeah, right! Maybe not.
So, all in all it’s been very positive so far. I can only hope that it continues along the same vein. The only downside is the limited internet. Which I really must give back now as I’ve had for a while to write this.
This is the view from the house:
And this is where the horses are turned out: